We saw lots of water birds on the lakes - pelicans, several kinds of heron, egrets, flamingos, cormorants. There were storks nesting on platforms on the tops of electricity poles (at least 9 of them along the road through Kerkini village). And we saw a cuckoo, which was thrilling.
|Storks nesting in Kerkini village|
|A field of Poet's Daffodil|
|Silkvine growing by Lake Kerkini|
Zagori is a limestone area, so especially rich in wild flowers and we saw lots of orchids there.
|Elder-flower orchid and Glanville fritillary|
We spent a couple of days around the Vikos Gorge, where the scenery is spectacular and the villages are charming. The river running through the gorge is the Voidomatis - in places the water looks a brilliant turquoise.
|Looking into Vikos Gorge|
The Zagori houses have a gate onto the road with its own roof - some are new or have been restored, but many look very ancient.
|A gateway in one of the Zagori villages|
I liked the chimneys - they look like little houses or temples, and often have a conical stone on top. The roofs are made of stone, too.
The villages in Zagori were linked by paved tracks, and local benefactors built bridges to take the tracks over the rivers. We crossed several very graceful examples, including the wonderful three-arched bridge near the village of Kipoi, where we stayed.
|Gold myrtle wreath, 350-300 BC|
|Gold diadem with head of Aphrodite from female grave at Lete, early 3rd cent BC|
|Gilt wreath from reconstruction of tomb of young woman & new-born infant, cemetery of ancient Aineia, 350-325 BC|
It was a really good holiday, very well-organised, and I haven't even mentioned all the food we ate - delicious, and lots of it. We had a wonderful time.